One Couple's Enchanted Forest Wedding at Berkeley Botanical Gardens in Berkeley, California
Carly Stein, founder and CEO of Beekeeper’s Naturals, married Oliver Kremer, co-founder and former co-CEO of Dos Toros Taqueria, a fast-casual Mexican restaurant chain based in New York City, with a whimsical "enchanted forest"-themed wedding amongst the redwoods at the University of California Berkeley Botanical Gardens in Berkeley, California.
"The wedding was a three-day celebration of our love and union," explains Carly. "Friday afternoon, Jessica Winterstern Attard hosted my bridal party in a meditation and bridal blessing. Friday night consisted of a dinner with our extended families. Saturday was a beer pong tournament for all our friends before our rehearsal dinner that evening. The ceremony was on Sunday, which was followed by a celebration with the magical and enchanted theme, in honor of mine and Oliver’s shared love of fantasy novels."
Carly recalls that the couple's vow exchange was a particular highlight from their three-day celebration. "The ceremony was incredible, it was the perfect combination of spiritual and authentic opening, with a heart-centered meditation and culminating, with tearful vows written and read aloud by Oliver and myself. We were extremely vulnerable in our ceremony and really focused on celebrating the love we share with each other as well as our community which brought everyone into it with us."
After saying "I do" surrounded by towering redwood trees on Sunday, the couple invited their loved ones to Oliver's childhood home for an elegant private residence wedding reception. But the fun didn't stop there—the couple also planned a festive after-party, which drew inspiration from Harry Potter. "The after-party had candles hanging on clear wire from the ceiling and looked like the Great Hall at Hogwarts," says Carly. "At the after-party upon entering there was a table of whimsical costume items guests could put on everything from elf ears to fairy wings and flower crowns. The after-party felt like a full-on fantasy world."
For the couple, it was a priority for them to harness a whimsical, ethereal feel while also prioritizing sustainability. To that end, the couple served local produce, meatless entrees and vegan desserts. "We featured local food, went meatless for the entrees (vegan or fish options), and had a vegan cheese plate with banana leaf crackers and a ton of rainbow of veggies," shares Carly of the couple's wedding menu. Additionally, the use of clean beauty products was paramount to the duo.
Looking back on the wedding, Carly encourages other to-be-weds to "make a point of staying close to your partner so that the memories can be shared. Fill the event with deeply personal, heartfelt moments, and a lot of dancing!"